Elevating Teacher Voices

In late September 2020, College Success Arizona and Expect More Arizona hosted the virtual event “Helping Parents, Teachers and Students Succeed During COVID.” During the event, we explored the impact of COVID-19 and the resources, parents, teachers and students believe are needed to be successful during the pandemic by talking with Nathaniel Rios, a teacher at Flowing Wells High School; Rebecca McKay, a parents of three high school students; and Ivan Carrillo, a senior at Nogales High School. If you would like to listen to the webinar, click here.


Our blog series explores the results of our May 2020 survey in more detail, with specific input from teachers across the state. As the pandemic trends shift and schools plan for re-openings, outlooks will continue to evolve. 

  • Returning to the Classroom: How Teachers Are Feeling Today
    Arizona is extremely fortunate to be home to tens of thousands of smart, caring, dedicated professionals who can’t wait for the opportunity to be with their students again in person. However, they still have serious concerns about their own health and safety, as well as that of their students. Hear what teachers across the state had to say about returning to the classroom.
  • Teachers Are Eager to Get Back to Teaching, with Appropriate Safety Protocols
    More than half of the 10,800 teachers surveyed are concerned or very concerned about health and safety as schools reopen. Educators share their thoughts on what protocols they think can realistically be put in place at schools to keep them and their students’ healthy and safe during the upcoming academic year.
  • Arizona Teachers Concerned About Their Students’ Emotional Well-Being, Academic Needs
    While health and safety are their biggest concerns for the 2020-21 school year, many teachers are also incredibly worried about the social and emotional well-being, as well as the academic needs of their students. Educators have a lot of great suggestions about how to ease the transition back to school.
  • Teachers Concerns About Arizona’s Achievement Gap Grow During Continued COVID-19 Closures
    Teachers are accustomed to addressing “summer slide” at the beginning of a school year as students come back to the classroom having forgotten as much as two months’ worth of learning. But the 2020 return to school will be different. As schools transitioned to distance learning in March, students had widely varied experiences, depending on what resources were available in their home and through their school.
  • What Do Educators Want From Sports and Extracurriculars in the Coming School Year?
    As education professionals consider how best to start the school year, many on schools’ front lines are wondering what those decisions will mean for athletics and extracurricular activities. Arts, sports, and clubs play an important role in the lives of youth, giving them outlets for expression, fitness, ways to find friends and develop talents. Hear what educators have to say about how these activities will look like this year.
  • Special Education Faced Special Challenges
    Special education teachers all over the state had their work cut out for them when the COVID-19 pandemic cut the school year short. But many were able to make the necessary adjustments to continue with student learning. SPED teachers from across Arizona weigh in on the challenges of distance learning and ways they were able to keep their students engaged.
  • Meeting the Needs of English Learners During Distance Learning
    English learners were especially vulnerable during school closures last spring as a result of language barriers with parents or caregivers, lack of technology, access to internet service and more. Educators across the state  shared how they prepared for this school year and put plans in place to ensure students are learning and engaging with the content, however it is being delivered.
  • Getting Educators and Families the Tools They Need to Succeed in a Virtual Learning Environment
    When COVID-19 forced school closures in March 2020, educators were caught off-guard. Many did not feel prepared for the transition to distance learning, since their training had equipped them for working face-to-face with students. Parents were also at a loss as to how to keep their children focused and as a result, many youth missed critical instruction. With the majority of districts starting this academic year in a virtual learning environment, learn how schools and educators prepared and adapted to ensure all students succeed.